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Dennis_Harmon

death in the mountains

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You guys need to decide for yourselves how selfish you really want to be. There is nothing wrong with being selfish. We exisit to gratify ourselves in every way. Thing of Americans as being the gluttonous (SP?) people of the world. We consume more resources than any other country in the world. We pollute more than any other country in the world. This probably means that we are mostly thinking of ourself. We are destroying the world as we do so but no one seems to be trying to stop it. This is why I do all of these great outdoor sports. It is too easy to just live a normal life and it seems like climbing, skiing, fishing and music is what challenges me the most. I can also take it to a level that few people are capable of bringing it to. I am not an elitist, just passionate.

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quote:

Originally posted by Crackbolter:

You guys need to decide for yourselves how selfish you really want to be. There is nothing wrong with being selfish. We exisit to gratify ourselves in every way. Thing of Americans as being the gluttonous (SP?) people of the world. We consume more resources than any other country in the world. We pollute more than any other country in the world. This probably means that we are mostly thinking of ourself. We are destroying the world as we do so but no one seems to be trying to stop it. This is why I do all of these great outdoor sports. It is too easy to just live a normal life and it seems like climbing, skiing, fishing and music is what challenges me the most. I can also take it to a level that few people are capable of bringing it to. I am not an elitist, just passionate.

Beautiful man, and all this from a guy who bolts cracks. [Wazzup]

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Perhaps this may fit here;

"There is after all a great nourishment in taking risks and confronting fear. The trick is to know how far the bungie will stretch."

Lee Green

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Personal responsibility is inherently selfish.

 

The fact of the matter is that Reality doesn't care what decision you make. It is what it is. If you choose to drive too fast on mountain roads, you are responsibile whether you choose to be or not. Reality is incapable of caring.

 

The ability to take risks is not for me to judge for someone else or for someone else to take for me. This whole thread seems a bit of a symptom and indicator of what makes us such litigous society. If you presume to impose your judgement on another, are you also willing to take responsibility if something happens to them?

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quote:

Originally posted by Figger Eight:

The most dangerous part of the climb is driving to the trailhead.

- Figger Eight, still climbin' for the chicks.

The most dangerous part of the climb can be going into the pub afterwards [big Drink] We climbed it ya [big Drink] We rock [big Drink] I think that girl is looking at me [big Drink] Heybabbe whatsyasign? [big Drink] Isszis your brother or your boyfriend? [big Drink][Roll Eyes]

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I think eating all those potato chips is more dangerous than climbing, just like the model train builder. Heart attack city. I heard some crap on TV the other day about class action law suits against McDonalds, etc. "Damn, I didn't know eating cheeseburgers and fries for dinner every night and sitting on my ass was going to make me obese and at high risk for heart disease. It's McDonalds fault. I want my $$$$ millions in reparations." Weird society we live in.

 

With the recent series of accidents, deaths, and rescues on PNW volcanos, it would make sense for all of us to do a little soul searching and re-evaluating of why we climb. I suspect most of us are going to conclude, "Yup, I still love climbing, and I'm still going to do it. Maybe I'll be just a tad more conservative. But giving up climbing would cost too much in terms of satisfaction and contentment in my life." Or something like that. My buddies had a close call a couple weeks ago. I don't know if they've been back into the mountains since then, but neither of them was indicating they were retiring to "safer" recreational activities. I'm not going to quit. One of the guys is married, and his wife isn't even pressuring him to quit climbing. Maybe just no more light and fast one day pushes on big peaks.

 

I think it's all been said, but nothing in life is really "safe" in absolute terms. People die every day doing just about every kind of activity imaginable. Climbing does involve objective dangers, but I believe the number of accidents in climbing compared to the number of people out there doing it and the number of climbing expeditions is relatively low.

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Maybe we can all just agree that dying in the mountains is a bad thing, but with the realization that we can die anywhere, anytime. Running away from the fear of dying won't make it go away. Perhaps just trying to do routes within your abilities will alleviate alot of the speculation about how or where or when it's going to happen. Being in *control* of a sometimes unpredictable situations is what makes it fun. I've run away many times to fight again another day, but always with the deep seated understanding that if something happens it will probably happen so quick I won't be able to alter it from happening. The X factor...

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O.K., I'm getting a little defensive here. I never said that climbing can be done without risks. That's just the nature of the sport. But we can make a deliberate decision to not exceed the bounderies of our abilities and to arrive back down in the valley intact. Don Willians, a friend of Joe Brown, both of which are probably unknown to most of the Gen-X crowd once said, "The mountains will always be here tomorrow. Your job is to make sure that you will be too." Stop dying up there. You're contaminating my water source. Dennis

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TG, once again you're right on target, and your presence on this board elevates the discourse considerably.

One more point about risk: If you look at death statistics for this country, you'll find that it's less risky to climb mountains than to build model railroads in your basement. By this I mean that the main cause of premature death in this country is heart disease, and the main cause of heart disease is laziness. I know personally of at least one person who left a family devastated for this reason: he may have taken care of their material needs, but he didn't take care of his own body. Dennis, if you think the model railroad builder who dies of a heart attack at age 43 is somehow less selfish than the climber, I'm afraid I disagree. At least the climber is living consciously, knowing the risks and keeping them in sight.

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quote:

Originally posted by Dennis Harmon:

O.K., I'm getting a little defensive here. I never said that climbing can be done without risks. That's just the nature of the sport. But we can make a deliberate decision to not exceed the bounderies of our abilities and to arrive back down in the valley intact. Don Willians, a friend of Joe Brown, both of which are probably unknown to most of the Gen-X crowd once said, "The mountains will always be here tomorrow. Your job is to make sure that you will be too." Stop dying up there. You're contaminating my water source. Dennis

Dennis look here bloke I did not die of climbing but of drinking [big Drink] maybe you should just shut your trap and drink beer if you are worried about your water system.

 

Also learn to spell my name correctly or I will punch your head down your neck before I let you buy me a beer. Your gheneralizations about not just climbing but "Gen-X youth" make you sound like a self important pompous gaper. Close mouth and stop escape of hot air. [Mad]

 

[ 06-05-2002, 12:54 PM: Message edited by: whillans ]

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